Friday, September 17, 2021

ISHOF 2010 Honor Swimmer Brooke Bennett Wins Female Title At Swim For Alligator Lighthouse

Olympic Champion Brooke Bennett Wins Female Title At Swim For Alligator Lighthouse

More than 460 national and international participants competed in clear ocean waters off the Florida Keys Saturday during the Swim for Alligator Lighthouse, an 8-mile open-water challenge.

Tampa Bay, Florida, resident Connor Signorin, 29, emerged from the Atlantic Ocean as the top individual swimmer with a time of 3 hours, 5 minutes and 37 seconds. The top female finisher was Olympic champion Brooke Bennett, 41, of Clearwater, Florida, who completed the race in 3:19:20. The distance star captured three Olympic gold medals during her career, titles in the 800 freestyle in 1996 and 2000, and a gold in the 400 free in 2000.

In other divisions, Tampa residents Andrew Lashlee and Robert Skaggs posted the fastest two-person relay time at 4:03:58.

Competitors in the Swim for Alligator Lighthouse, an open-water, long-distance event, cross the start line Saturday, Sept. 11, 2021, in Islamorada, Fla., head to Alligator Reef Lighthouse, four miles off the Florida Keys. After rounding the lighthouse they swim back to shore. The event began in 2013 to help raise awareness to preserve the almost 150-year-old lighthouse as well as five other lighthouses off the Keys. This year’s contest has attracted 461 swimmers. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY (Andy Newman/Florida Keys News Bureau/HO)

Photo Courtesy: Florida Keys Media

Swimmers Michelle Dalton, Sara McLarty and Misty Bacerra, all of Clermont, Florida, won the three-person class in 4:15:32.

The winning four-person team was a mixed relay of male and female competitors from Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Tim Shead, Harold Wagner, Serge Wenzel and Ann Kilpatrick posted a time of 3:34:42.

Athletes swam to Alligator Reef Lighthouse off Islamorada, rounded the beacon and came back to the start and finish points at Amara Cay Resort.

• More Open Water News

Founded by Florida Keys artist “Lighthouse Larry” Herlth, the annual race is staged to raise awareness about the need to preserve the almost 150-year-old Alligator Lighthouse and five other aging lighthouses off the Florida Keys. The event also raises college scholarship funds for Keys students interested in competitive swimming.

Recently, the Islamorada community-based organization that hosts the annual swim was approved to take ownership of the lighthouse under the National Historic Lighthouse Preservation Act. Restoring it is likely to take five to seven years and cost up to $9 million, according to organizers. Fundraising efforts have already begun at

Constructed to warn ships away from the Florida Keys reef tract, the lighthouses are no longer maintained, as their function has been replaced by modern Global Positioning System navigation.

Competitors in the Swim for Alligator Lighthouse, an open-water, long-distance event, round the Florida Keys lighthouse and head to shore Saturday, Sept. 11, 2021, near Islamorada, Fla. The event began in 2013 to help raise awareness about preserving the almost 150-year-old lighthouse as well as five other lighthouses off the Keys. This year’s contest attracted 461 swimmers. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY (Steve Panariello/Florida Keys News Bureau/HO)

Photo Courtesy: Florida Keys Media

Australian Chloe McCardel Chases Record 44th English Channel Crossing

Australian Chloe McCardel Chases Record 44th English Channel Crossing

Australian marathon swimmer Chloe McCardel will pursue a world record 44th crossing of the English Channel over the next month.

McCardel has made the 34-kilometer crossing of the Channel on 41 occasions. That is more than any man in history and trails only the 43 crossings made by Alison Streeter. McCardel is aiming for crossing No. 42 later in September. If conditions allow, and anticipated August swims have already been pushed back due to high winds, she could be in line to make her 43rd and 44th crossings by early October.

“I can’t wait to get these final swims underway, the closer I’m getting, the more excited I am,” McCardel said in a press release. “I only have 3 swims remaining now, which I’m planning to carry out in September and October.”

McCardel first crossed the English Channel in 2009. The 36-year-old native of Melbourne surpassed the men’s world record of 34 crossings in 2020. She has persevered through the daunting passage so many times despite being hospitalized with hypothermia during a 2011 attempt.

She was the first Australian and only the fourth person to complete a triple non-stop crossing of the Channel in 2015, the first to do so in 25 years. Chasing Streeter’s record is a natural next step for McCardel.

“Alison Streeter was my idol when I was moving to Channel swimming – she inspired me to continue to push my boundaries,” McCardel said. “Australia has such a rich history in English Channel swimming and I’m so proud to represent my Country out in the Channel, a place which I see as my spiritual home. Although I’ve travelled alone for this challenge, I have such a great support network here in the UK who always get behind me and cheer me on!”

Chloe McCardel holds various world records, including the longest unassisted ocean swim (124.4 kilometers in the Bahamas in 2014), most English Channel crossings in one season (eight in 2016) and most Channel crossings in one week (three in 2015). She turned in the fastest crossing, male or female, of the 2011, 2012, 2016 and 2019 seasons. She also works as a coach and mentor to other open-water swimmer and a motivational speaker.

McCardel won the 2016 Poseidon Award from the International Swimming Hall of Fame, the year she was inducted to the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame. She is an inaugural member of the Australian Swimming Hall of Fame.

“I really want to inspire young people, especially girls, showing them that anything is possible – I only learnt how to swim at the age of 11 and I will soon have managed to swim the English Channel more times than anyone in the world, I want them to know that they can do anything too!,” McCardel said. “I think sometimes women don’t get recognised for their achievements as much as they should, to have female role models has been amazing for me and I really hope I can be that for other women and girls.”

Tuesday, September 7, 2021

Texas Dedicates Eddie Reese Outdoor Pool in Honor of Legendary Coach

Texas Dedicates Eddie Reese Outdoor Pool in Honor of Legendary Coach

Eddie Reese has been the head men’s swimming coach at Texas since 1978-1979, and in his third season, the Longhorns captured their first national championship. Since then, the team has raised its total to national victories to 15, and that has made Reese the most decorated collegiate swimming coach ever. So to honor their coach, the University of Texas constructed a new outdoor aquatic center named for Reese, and the pool was dedicated in a ceremony Saturday morning in Austin.

Donors, alumni, athletic director Chris Del Conte and Texas women’s coach Carol Capitani were all in attendance at the dedication. The pool actually opened last fall, but the dedication was delayed until now.

Reese is entering his 44th season as head coach at Texas after he turned 80 in July, so he has been at the helm in Austin for more than half his life. Reese announced his retirement in March, two days after his Longhorns captured the NCAA title with a 27-point win over Cal. However, two weeks after three Texas-trained college and pro swimmers qualified for the U.S. Olympic team (Townley HaasDrew Kibler and Gunnar Bentz) and several others just missed (Carson Foster and Will Licon among them), Texas announced that Reese would be returning as Texas head coach after all and that Wyatt Collins would remain as Reese’s assistant.

In recent history, Texas had won four straight championships in 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018, most of them in completely dominant fashion, before Cal was victorious at the 2019 championships at Texas’ home pool in Austin. The 2020 meet was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but Texas was back on top this past year, even though the Longhorns only won two events, the 200 free relay and one-meter diving. Reese’s Longhorns and Dave Durden’s Golden Bears are expected to once again battle for the national title at the 2022 championships in late March in Atlanta.

Passages: Bill Wadley, Former Ohio State Swimming Coach, ASCA CEO, Succumbs to Pancreatic Cancer

Former Ohio State swimming coach and American Swimming Coaches Association (ASCA) CEO Bill Wadley has died, multiple sources have confirmed.

He was diagnosed with an aggressive form of pancreatic cancer earlier this year.

Bill Wadley had retired as head coach at Ohio State in March 2017 where he coached 16 Olympians, 30 Big Ten Champions, and was named 2010 Big Ten Coach of the Year.

Wadley previously served on the College Swimming Coaches Association of America (CSCAA) Board of Directors and was the past president for ASCA.  He was named executive director of ASCA in October 2020, taking over for Steve Roush, who is now the project manager for the 65-year-old organization.  Roush was hired at ASCA in July 2019, succeeding John Leonard who had held the position for 35 years.

In the pool, 19 of Bill Wadley’s swimmers have been named All-Americans and 63 have earned honorable mention All-America status. In 2010, while hosting the Big Ten Championships, his team brought home the first conference title since 1956 and the 13th in program history. Under his tutelage, he had a swimmer compete at seven consecutive Summer Olympic Games.

Former swimmers posted about Wadley’s death on social media.

Sad to see the passing of my @OhioState swim coach Bill Wadley this morning. He was a great coach, he cultivated an ecosystem where I met my brothers and lead the team to a Big Ten Championship in 2010. He will be missed. #GoBucks,” Quincy Lee wrote on Twitter.

In addition to his time at Ohio State, Wadley also had plenty of international coaching experience, being a member of the USA team staff at the 1991, 1993 and 2009 World University Games, the 1998 Goodwill Games and the 2011 Duel in the Pool.

He resigned as ASCA CEO earlier this year following a series of incidents outside of the pool.

Prior to OSU, Wadley spent two years as the men’s swimming coach at Michigan State University, coaching the women’s team in his final year with the Spartans as well.

Wadley is a native of Rockford, Ill., and was a 1979 graduate of Austin Peay State University before heading to the Big Ten.

Friday, September 3, 2021

Norman Tripp: The passing of a Ft. Lauderdale Legend and friend of ISHOF


Post we are sharing rom FaceBook by City of Ft. Lauderdale Mayor, Dean Trantalis:

Our week ends with the passing of another important person in the history of Fort Lauderdale -- Norman Tripp, the founding partner of the Tripp Scott law firm. My sympathies to the Tripp family and the Tripp Scott law firm in their time of grief. Here is the statement from the firm on his passing:

LAUDERDALE, Fla. September 3, 2021 - Tripp Scott Law Firm joins the Broward community in mourning the death of philanthropist and lawyer Norman Tripp, founding partner and chairman emeritus of Tripp Scott.

Tripp founded Tripp Scott in 1969. Soon after he became outside general counsel to Alamo Rent A Car. He served as chairman of the Board of Trustees of Florida Atlantic University, a trustee for the University of Miami, and chair and vice-chair of the State of Florida Board of Community Colleges. In addition, he was a member of the Advisory Board of the Huizenga School of Business at Nova Southeastern University. In 2008, he was appointed to the Florida Board of Governors for the State University System.

"Norman was one of Fort Lauderdale's finest business leaders best known for launching Alamo Rental Car, championing so many great organizations in Broward County and being a leader in higher education in Florida," said Sen. James Scott, Tripp's law partner for 42 years. "Connecting our names and partnering together offered a lifetime of memories, great laughs and many adventures. From the bottom of my heart, I'll miss Norman and my prayers go out to his wife Janie, Christine (Yates) and his entire family."

"Today, we reflect on the life of Norman Tripp whose name remains a prominent part of our firm and whose sense of purpose has been instilled into our culture. Norman founded Tripp Scott in 1969 and through his hard work and legal acumen, helped build it into one of the most trusted and respected firms in the state," said Ed Pozzuoli, CEO of Tripp Scott and Dennis Smith, chairman of Tripp Scott, Tripp's law partner of 44 years. "Norman was a great lawyer, but his role in our community will long be remembered and will be sincerely missed. He was passionate about educational opportunity and made it his mission to ensure a more level playing field. Our condolences go out to his wife, Janie, his daughter Christine Yates a firm director and the entire Tripp family."

A founding benefactor of the Community Foundation of Broward, he initiated the Tripp Fund for Educational Opportunity and the Tripp Scott Fund for Community Diversity. In 1998, he successfully spearheaded the citizens' campaign for passage of the Broward County Public Library bond issue.

Tripp also built a foundation for successful business by mentoring young partners who will lead Tripp Scott for years to come.

"Norman is a huge loss to our team, but his legacy will remain within the fabric of the law firm he founded over 50 years ago. He instilled in all of us a passion to advocate for our clients and we'll ensure those principles are always a part of Tripp Scott," said Paul Lopez, COO of Tripp Scott.

Tripp received numerous honors in recognition of his community contributions, including the 2001 Outstanding Citizens Award from the Florida Library Association and the 2001 Tribute-to-the-Family Award from the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. In 1988, he received the Child Advocate of the Year Award from the Children's Home Society and the University of Miami College of Arts and Science's Outstanding Alumni Award. He is also the recipient of the Leadership Broward Inc.'s "Leader of the Year" award and was awarded Broward Economic Development Council's Spirit of Broward Award for Overall Community Leader. He was awarded the International Swimming Hall of Fame President's Award for his exceptional achievement in promoting the mission of the organization. Tripp earned a law degree, magna cum laude, from Cleveland State University and a bachelor's degree in economics from the University of Miami where he was a member of the prestigious Iron Arrow Society and the Gamma Phi Chapter of the Sigma Chi Fraternity, which later honored him as a Significant Sig.

Wednesday, September 1, 2021

New Exhibit in Philadelphia to Share History of Segregation in Swimming

A historic photo taken at the Fairmount Water Works Pool is on display for the upcoming “POOL: A Social History of Segregation” exhibit at the Fairmount Water Works in Philadelphia on Wednesday, Aug. 25, 2021. The exhibit explores the history and current day implications of segregated swimming in America. It is set to open on the first week of September.

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A new exhibit opening next week at the Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Center near Philadelphia will share the story of African Americans in swimming. The exhibit, titled “POOL: A Social History of Segregation,” will show the history of how black Americans were systemically denied access to the lifesaving skill of swimming throughout centuries of U.S. history. The exhibit, which will run from Sept. 3 until Aug. 30, 2022, was curated by Victoria Prizzia.

According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, the exhibit “is a chillingly honest and informative look at how America’s separate and unequal pools are a key part of the foundation upon which systemic racism stands. Segregated pools fostered the lack of access to water in Black communities, and are among the reasons Black children in the United States ages to 10 to 14 are still 7.6 times more likely to drown in swimming pools than white children. This legacy fuels the misperception that Black people can’t swim, are afraid of water, and worse, don’t deserve to experience its joy.”

The exhibit utilizes murals, documentaries, animation, vintage photos and informative displays to show the painful legacy of black Americans being denied access to pools, and the exhibit will also feature some of the most predominant black Americans who have excelled in swimming, including Philadelphia coaches Jim Ellis and Malachi and Olivia Cunningham as well as Olympians like Cullen Jones and Simone Manuel.

The Inquirer story adds that continued inequity and systemical flaws in the system continue to deny African Americans pool access, even in 2021. The article then goes on to describe what the exhibit will look like and how it intends to make its visitors feel.

“Prizzia designed the 4,700-square-foot exhibit to be calming,” according to the Inquirer. “Cerulean floor-to-ceiling banners with quotes from 15 luminaries in African American aquatic history are nestled in graphics hanging at the exhibit’s entrance. An animated projection on the floor moves and sounds like a lake. This, Prizzia says, is the Blue Mind Pool, where four stools are placed.”

The exhibit will also include the original John B. Kelly Natatorium pool, known as the Aquarium Pool. Built in 1971, the Kelly pool was one of the first integrated pools in Philadelphia, and while it was closed in 1972 and has aged considerably, the current graffiti-covered structure will sit in the exhibit as a reminder of the legacy of segregation in the sport.

Panel images will include the shot of a motel manager in Florida “throwing acid on a group of Black and white teenagers trying to integrate the motel’s pool” and also more uplifting art that includes documentaries and animations by black artists “that depict Black Americans and their connections to pools, beaches, and waterparks.”

Read the full story from the Philadelphia Inquirer here, and check out more information about “POOL” here.